Open Minds, Open Hearts: Teaching Diversity in Preschool
My students need multicultural paint, markers and dolls along with books and puzzles featuring multiple languages, diverse families and abilities as well as an exploration of challenging current gender roles.
My classroom consists of 20 enthusiastic and inquisitive young learners with active imaginations and kind hearts. Many of the children are English language learners while encountering their first classroom setting. I work in partnership with my assistant teacher to create a safe, supportive environment for my students with a focus on literacy and language development. Together, we set the foundation for learning through small group literacy, art, mathematics, and science activities while balancing the school day with social-emotional problem-solving and self help practices. Our activities also promote kinetic movement for active learners as well as whole child free choice centers.
At an early age, our preschoolers are already faced with the many challenges presented by society in regards to gender, race, language, immigration, differing abilities and family structure and financial status. I am privileged to work at a school which focuses on respect, tolerance, empathy, and acceptance as we join together to form a diverse and supportive community in hopes of helping staff, children and families honor differences while providing bridges to enhance our human connection.
In regards to the chosen classroom materials, I hope to provide a more inclusive environment in which children and families feel represented while also exploring the beauty of diversity.
Read-aloud's open up discussions and provide content to address issues and topics as they arise in the classroom. These necessary books will add to our growing diversity collection on issues and challenges currently coming up in my classroom while providing additional books in multiple languages for my families to borrow and share. The diverse families and abilities puzzles will literally be helping children to mindfully and kinetically piece together visual representations that may or may not be familiar to them. The children will tend to the needs of the dramatic play multicultural babies while I model caring for each one without favor towards a specific doll. Additionally, art is a healing, collaborative and exploratory process for young hands as the children work together to express and create beauty with a variety of shades.
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